“I’m going to take a few minutes of your time to be as vulnerable as I can be. Coming from a very hurt heart of someone who wants good in the world, but people make the goal so hard to reach.
This is what it looks like: being 22, Indigenous, Christian, and a woman who believes so wholeheartedly people deserve to have equal rights, despite their age, gender, or sexual orientation.
This is what countless days of constant arguments with people who don’t seem to value human lives looks like.
This is what it looks like, feeling defeated, when a friend tells you, ‘Sometimes people won’t change their minds,’ because why?
What is the point of being an ally, anti-racist, or an activist, if you can’t change people’s minds?
This is what it looks like when you try to defend Christians, but being Indigenous also makes you question your literal existence.
This is what it looks like when you need a few minutes to sit in a car, listening to praise music and being angry with God about who He puts on this earth and in your life.
This is what it looks like when you lose track of time and can’t cook a nice homemade meal for your husband when he gets home from work, because you’re putting too much energy into fighting the fight you wish your ancestors could have.
This is what it looks like coming up on my sister’s 5-year anniversary of her passing in the middle of a pandemic and cultural warfare.
You see friends, this isn’t fun for us. It isn’t fun pointing out privilege and systemic racism when you see it. People hate us when we do it.
The reality is, we just want everyone to be equal, but the people you go to school with, go to church with, serve at restaurants, walk by on the streets, don’t want that. They want to put us down and belittle us. They want to steal our voices and suck every bit of our energy until we have no fight left.
It’s really easy to say, ‘Take breaks.’ As someone who takes on far too much (and I realize it), it’s really hard to set my phone down when people face these things off of social media.
It is too easy for us to think when we put our phones down it is over, when the people we love face oppression and racism every day all day. I lack the boundaries it takes to put my phone down and relax when the world seems to be too much for me.
Please bear with us when we don’t want to talk.
Please bear with us when we don’t want to visit.
Please bear with us when we don’t want to laugh.
Sometimes, people take that from us in a way I could never explain. Even if we try with every part of our being to prevent it.
So, from one activist to another, I see you. I hear you. My heart breaks with you.
For more ways to help, fight with us. Sign petitions, call out racism in your own life, encourage those who take a stand against injustice. Or simply let us know you’re here.
Together, we CAN make a difference.
Isaiah 1:17: ‘Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.'”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Emily Southwind. You can follow her journey on her website. Submit your own story here, and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
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